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TATAL: Talking about teaching and learning

Facilitated by HERDSA members from Australasia

An outline of the 7th HERDSA TATAL Workshops to be run at the conference in Sydney.

The workshop follows two main conference themes:

  • Delegates will engage in rigorous developmental activities.
  • The TATAL provides delegates with an opportunity to advance their understanding of curriculum transformation and also add to practice.

Intended audience: Delegates who have at least two years of teaching experience and want to develop their own understanding and awareness of their teaching philosophy; those with more experience who want time to reflect on their teaching and learning; Associate Deans Education, Academic Developers and champions for teaching and learning who seek to use TATALs (Talking about Teaching and Learning) to foster a serious approach to teaching and learning in their institution.

Learning Outcomes: Participants will enhance their awareness and understanding of their beliefs and values that underlie their teaching and learning practice through collaborative reflection on their teaching philosophies and those of their colleagues.

Workshop Description

TATAL makes us think about how we teach and also about how we align our teaching with the scholarship of teaching…”it makes me aware of how research can underpin and strengthen my teaching. And it’s fun”. (TATAL participant 2012)

TATAL workshops develop cohorts of reflective practitioners who meet regularly to enhance their teaching and the learning of their students. Participants reflect on and share their practices using a collaborative model developed by McCormack and Kennelly (2011)1. Participants can continue the TATAL experience after the conference through Skype, with a view to beginning the HERDSA Fellowship process. HERDSA TATAL Sydney will start with a full day pre-conference workshop and finish with a session over breakfast during the conference.

Pre-conference workshop (Tuesday 27th June, 9.00am – 4:30pm): To begin, facilitators and participants will establish a safe collaborative environment in which to investigate the challenges and successes of teaching and learning. Participants will start to construct their teaching philosophy statement by free writing their response to the following questions: Why is being a teacher important to me; what personal experiences inform/motivate my teaching today; and why are these experiences important enough for me to remember them today? Through free writing, sharing and reflecting, participants will further explore their beliefs about teaching and learning, why they hold those beliefs, and how those beliefs are played out in their teaching context. By the end of the day participants will have the framework of a personal teaching philosophy and have begun a draft philosophy statement.

Session during conference (Thursday 29th June 7.30 to 8.45am): During this session participants will engage in a Skype session with TATALers from another part of Australia. Participants will arrange dates for future online and Face to Face meetings where they can finish constructing a teaching portfolio in a safe, collegial and collaborative environment.

Following the conference: TATAL groups will continue, face-to-face for Sydney participants and virtually for participants from geographically diverse regions, to prepare teaching portfolios.

Time: 7 hours over two days of the conference – 6 hours day one (workshop), 1 hour during the conference.

Location and venue: Sydney – International Convention Centre, Darling Harbour. Based on recent HERDSA conference TATAL experience we are expecting up to 50 participants. We request a wheelchair accessible venue that is able to accommodate 50 participants working in separate groups; with teaching equipment such as a whiteboard, computer, data projector and internet access. There will be a skype at breakfast on 29th June!

Cost: $0 (There is a $20 or $25 charge for the TATAL workbook used during the workshop sessions and beyond. Lunch and morning tea provided)

Facilitators: Lead facilitators are Kate Thomson, Sydney University kate.thomson@sydney.edu.au; and Geoff Treloar, Australian Christian Theology, Sydney, gtreloar@actheology@edu.au. Other facilitators are; Robert Kennelly, University of Canberra, rmkennelly@homemail.com.au; Stuart Schonell, University of Tasmania, Hobart, stuart.schonell@utas.edu.au; John Gilchrist, Australian Catholic University, multi campii, john.gilchrist@acu.edu.au; and Ainslie Robinson, Notre Dame University, Freemantle, ainslie.robinson@nd.edu.au.

Contacts: Robert Kennelly rmkennelly@homemail.com.au; kate.thomson@sydney.edu.au

Facilitator Bibliographies:

  • Geoff Treloar is director of learning and teaching, Australian College of Theology and visiting Fellow in History, School of Humanities and Languages at UNSW.
  • Kate Thomson; lecturer Health Sciences at the University of Sydney and began TATALing in 2011. Her interests include informal conversations, technology, and academic development.
  • John Gilchrist is a Senior Research Fellow at the ACU Academy of Law. He is a Fellow of HERDSA and a member of various TATAL communities.
  • Robert Kennelly; A pioneer HERDSA Fellow, life member, teacher of management, researcher in reflective practice and the co-founder of the COP called TATAL
  • Ainslie Robinson a TATALer since 2013, is an Academic Developer the University of Notre Dame from 2012 with previous experience at UWA and Macquarie Uni.
  • Stuart Schonell; Senior Teaching Fellow (UTAS) and 2012 TATALer) teaches and researches in business and leadership and advises on curriculum development and teacher development. (148 words)

1Coralie McCormack & Robert Kennelly (2011): ‘We must get together and really talk …’. Connection, engagement and safety sustain learning and teaching conversation communities, Reflective Practice, 12:4, 515-531

Register Online
  • Key Dates
  • Call for Proposals Open 12 September 2016
  • Registration Opens 19 September 2016
  • Call for Refereed Paper Abstracts Closes 23 October 2016
  • Notification of Acceptance for Refereed Paper Abstracts 15 November 2016
  • Full Paper from Accepted Abstracts Due 6 February 2017
  • All Other Submission Types Due 20 February 2017
  • Notification of Acceptance for All Other Submission Types 10 April 2017
  • Early Bird Registration Extended till 12 May 2017
  • Pre-Conference Workshops 27 June 2017
  • HERDSA 2017 Conference 28 – 30 June 2017